I went fishing at Diamond Lake today with my son-in-law Mike and a friend. I don’t think I have ever fished at Diamond Lake in November before, because it is usually to cold. But today it was 60 degrees, the sun was shining brightly, and the fish were biting. We could see early that we were going to be catching a lot of fish so we released all but the very biggest, and still all got our limit of 5 fish apiece. I don’t think any made it to 20 inches but a number were close, and very fat. Very few things are as enjoyable to me as a day of fishing with friends, especially when it is warm and the fish are biting. I was supposed to go salmon fishing at the coast with another friend but it got cancelled for lack of rain and fish, so this trip was arranged about 9:00 pm last night, nice substitute!
We all know that life is hard, full of trials, heartache, and pain. It is supposed to be, God made it that way. He created life as a time when we grow in character to be as much like Jesus as is possible so that when we get to heaven He will enjoy us and we will enjoy Him because we are alike. Life is hard, but heaven is wonderful, so focus on eternity, and live life with purpose.
But strong people who are running the race set before them with endurance and grit need to get revived regularly and systematically. God created everything in a week and then established that there be a regular day of rest every week, systematically, routinely. As people we have several different gas tanks that need filled up routinely. The physical gas tank is the easiest to understand and fill up, take a nap. The emotional gas tank is a little bit trickier to understand and fill up, and when we don’t we don’t have much passion, are unmotivated, and experience depression and burnout. The third gas tank, the “will power” gas tank is very important to our running with endurance, it is what keeps us from quitting when life gets tough.
So, physical renewal happens when we take a nap, exercise, and eat right. Our emotional gas tank is filled up by fishing, or working in the garden, or quilting, or dinner with friends. So, what about our “Will Power” gas tank? Isaiah 40:31 says, “Those who wait upon the Lord shall be renewed in their strength, they will mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not get tired, and they shall walk and not become weary”. Do you think this verse is talking about physical energy, emotional, or “will power”? It is the strength of our soul, our inner person, our will. I am confident that “waiting on the Lord” is reading the Bible, praying, worshiping, confessing sin, gathering with other believers, the basic spiritual disciplines that so many neglect because of business.
Philippians 2:13 says, “for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.”
Who does God work in to give “will”? those who “wait on the Lord”. I sleep every night, you could say it is a routine. I eat, usually three times a day, a very entrenched routine that I seldom miss. I go fishing a couple times a month, I work on my boats, I work on my cars, I ride my bicycle, and I keep track of the amount of time and frequency that I play so I am always on fire and motivated to save the world! But the strength of my soul, my inner will to never give up, to endure, how do I fill that tank up? Wait on the Lord! Every day, routinely, systematically, keep track, it is very important.